Picky's Picks Vol. 9: Tony Hawk, Sync (2014)


Tony HawkSync- 2014

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3DbZ5odFIs4&w=560&h=315]

We all know that skating by yourself doesn't even compare to skating with your friends. Tony doesn't just skate with his friends, he plays 2-player mode and kills it. With a mile long list of goddamn legends skating along side Mr. Hawk, this part is beyond impressive. I probably watched the Lance Mountain clip 75 times and I'm not sure that was enough. So next time you're out skating with your pals keep this video in mind, and don't try anything you saw here. You and your friend will both die, you're not qualified.


Picky's Picks Vol. 8: Dan Pappas, "The Better Life" (2006)


Dan PappasThe Better Life. 2006

Dan is one of the most naturally talented people I've ever seen on a skateboard in my entire life. Top notch style, trick selection, and I should probably mention that he's only 14 in this part. This was a guy destined to be "your favorite pro's favorite pro". However, due to injuries he now tickles the ivory on cruise ships which he probably does better than anyone else, as well. Rumor has it he filmed his ender for an ice cream! (ah, to be young again). Just watch the part and be jealous you'll never have a switch three flip like this dude!


[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gGjeci3_SoE]

Music Appreciation: Multi-Lingual Soundtracks

[spotify id="spotify:user:124752056:playlist:51v0vRmZ6n7XWNwgk0my1A" width="300" height="380" /]

click "play", then begin reading

I was watching the Helas Mixtape one day, thinking about Lucas' career, doing some exploratory analysis, and my research led me to a place I didn't expect to go. I was in (quite literally) foreign territory. It seems like we've had a resurgence, although I'm hesitant to call it that in fear of the "don't call it a comeback" retort, but after watching the Magenta Capsule (Jimmy Lannon SOTY), and the Helas edit, I couldn't help but think about songs with non-English lyrics.

Look - I realize that it may seem like I have some sort of English-superiority complex, but I think we all really need to just look at this objectively and agree, first and foremost, that the vast majority of skate soundtracks are to songs with English lyrics. Disagree? Well I just did a tally of every single song on skatevideosite, and it's 87.289%* English-lyric songs, so suck it.

With that said, I would like to explore, or recollect, some of the videos, bands, and skateboarders responsible for giving the skate world exposure to languages outside of the customary American dialect.

*fabricated statistic

Rodney Mullen vs. Daewon Song Round 2

rodney daewon

Yes, there is a VHS review coming soon, don't worry. IN THE MEANTIME, however, we need to take a moment and discuss the music supervision** in this video. Reckless would be a great understatement, and would do a disservice to whoever was at the helm. Grabbing tracks from the Matrix soundtrack, taking in French rap, Flamenco, Rockwell, Techno, Eric Sermon, and the list goes on. This eclectic soundtrack has a little something for everybody. I actually really like this soundtrack. I know. Fucked up.

JB. The fact that people go uncorrected when they pronounce his last name as though it rhymes with 'skillet' is further proof that the skate community needs to tighten up on its' "who fuckin' cares" attitude. Anyway, I absolutely fell in love with JB's part to some French rap. Couldn't tell you one word that the guy was saying, but I had this shit memorized. If the internet had come around just a bit sooner I probably would've sought out more French rap, and probably could've pursued a career in the music industry. Oh well, c'est la vie. ;)

Enrique's song was easily my favorite in the video. Damnit, you have no idea how badly I wanted to download this song, or go buy the album at Strawberry's or whatever. As I'm writing this I'm wondering why the American music industry was so exclusive 10-15 years ago. Maybe skateboarding is truly the link to cultural diversity (awww). Either that or, as we all know, skateboarders just have the best taste in music, right? Anyhow, Enrique seems to have some control over what he skates to, whether it's 15 years ago, or in a recent bones edit. I would say he's the most underrated dude of all time, but are you still underrated when everybody picks you as the most underrated? Or does everybody just wanna keep you as their own little secret. Think about it brah.

Javier Sarmiento/ Rodrigo TX


Speaking of the perpetually slept on...which eS contract shoe did you buy?

I could specifically talk about The Firm - Can't Stop, but if I were to do that, I'd also have to bring up Bob Burnquist skating to a song written by Ray Barbee about Bob. So, instead, I'll talk about these two guys. I actually don't like the photo above because it makes me really nervous. The amount of talent on that bench is too much for me to handle, and heaven forbid there be some sort of strange accident that happens in that location, I'm not sure that skateboarding would survive. Rodrigo and Javier skate to great songs every single time, but their choices in Can't Stop are particularly noteworthy. I know you're all waiting for me to say it, so this is your cue to click play on Ja Sei Namorar. Crowd favorite. Instant classic. Javier to Dame Veneno is great, but sorry, it gets smoked by Rodrigo.

Diego Bucchieri


I just want to squeeze this one right here in the middle because I just remember this part distinctly sticking out in Good & Evil, and how absolutely absurd I felt the song was. Until I couldn't stop listening to it. Spanish Metal. I couldn't believe it. Also - Diego is a boss.

Gipsy Kings

gipsy kings

If there is one band that is single-handedly responsible for introducing the skate world to flamenco/salsa style music, it is the Gipsy Kings. You might remember them from Adrian Lopez' part in Dying to Live, or perhaps that scene from Big Lebowski, I mean...um...Jesus Fernandez/Chico's part in Pretty Sweet. If you don't remember these parts, and somehow haven't heard anything by the Gipsy Kings, well, that's kind of sick because you get to experience it for the first time today, like a newborn sucking in it's first warm drop of milk from it's mothers teet. Except in this case it's my teet you're suckling, and it's the sweet milk of great music that you'll be forever indebted to me for showing you.

But speaking of Chico. 


Chico Chico Chico, only you could pull off a 59 second part. I just want to take a moment to go out on a tangent and talk about his Tommy Hilfiger long sleeve at 0:14. Need that.

Chico's music selection has been impeccable. I mean, the guy skated to Bill Withers. If I were to rate his song selection on a scale of 1-10, I wouldn't because life isn't about ratings, it's about...well... I don't know where I'm going with this I'd probably give it like a 9.

Cliche - Bon Voyage


This brings us back to our hero, Lucas. What does he skate to? You guessed it, you know it, heedless French Rap. Lucas shows his longevity and whether knowingly or not, pays tribute to his roots by throwing it back to what Gillet was doing 15 years prior. Damn this part is insane. I promised myself I wouldn't talk about skating and would focus on the music, but. 

Tom Penny, Mini-Ramp

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HT5aE2mflsw]

Oh, you thought the article was over? Not yet, little Johnny. Quite possibly the most well-known mini-ramp section of the 2000's, the introduction to Tom Penny's long awaited part in Sorry pretty much floored anybody watching. People weren't sure what to expect, it had been years since he had released a full part (remember - his part in Menikmati was mainly old footage). When this intro happened, everybody wanted to move to France and build a miniramp in a barn. Everybody. The song is the perfect fit, and crushes hearts when coupled with Tom's alleyoop frontside ollie spanning the width of the ramp. *hits repeat on part*. Classic Tom.


Picky's Pick Vol. 6: Stone Cold Steve Austin Fights Booker T in a Grocery Store


Let's face it, if you live in New England there is no chance you're skating outside today, or probably for the next 85 years if this snow keeps up. So lets just forget about it for one day and watch two grown men fight in a super market! In the infamous words of Jim Ross "this ones a slobber knocker!" -Picky

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKmUo9pTd3M&w=420&h=315]

Picky's Pick Vol. 5: Geoff Rowley Sorry (2002)


Geoff Rowley Sorry 2002 "Oh that felt fucking tasty, I'd like to do it again...you ready?"

This part comes in heavy with gnarly slams, and is followed with one of the biggest bag of tricks in the game. I've probably watched this part over a hundred times and it never gets old. Even in 2015 this is still one of the best parts ever. It's hard to put into words how incredible this part truly is, so just watch it and get hyped!

"See that? Fuckin' hurt."

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6yxO4CwjFE&w=420&h=315]


To Bid, or Not To Bid: Episode 1


To Bid, or Not To Bid

Your Weekly Guide to Using eBay to Satisfy Your Skate Addiction

with Leland Taylor

We've all been there. Up at 3 a.m. perusing the internet in search for old Alien shirts, Lakai Staples or other reflections of our past lives in a sad attempt to feel something. It's normal. I swear, it's okay.

Well luckily for us, Leland Taylor, eBay guru and skate trivia savant, is here to give us a weekly update as to what's on eBay, skateboarding's museum with revolving items.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9R3AXJXzpBk]

Ali Boulala: The People's Champion


This came to me while I was at Dunkin Donuts the other day. I had been thinking a lot about movies and in particular, romantic comedies. I'm not ashamed to say I enjoy a rom-com or two every so often, but the problem with these movies is that the endings tend to create a dissonance between the viewer and the characters in the movie. Throughout most of the movie you relate to the struggles and qualms of the main characters: you laugh with them, you cry with them, and you see some of your relationship in theirs. But then comes the ending, the big, stupid, cliche ending. The ending you kind of always knew was going to happen, but the ending nonetheless. He gets the girl. They make out (maybe bone if you're up on your R-rated shit). They ride off into the sunset. Hurray for them. Meanwhile, back in the REAL WORLD, you found out your girl cheated on you with a huge, sexy homie named Sylvester (I literally don't know a single person with that name) and they ride off into the sunset and, presumably, bone until they forgot that you even existed. You shared your deepest secrets with that girl, you met that chick's parents...dude, you went to Jared. Doesn't that mean anything to her?

Romantic comedies lack a true sense of reality...we love them, but we can only aspire to be them.

Enter the world of skate videos: our window into the lives of our talented idols. They inspire others to inspire themselves™, both on and off our boards, (if we're being real here, just on our boards) and especially around SMLTalk HQ, our favorite skateboarding is skateboarding we can relate to.

Hence, why many skate videos, and in particular many skate videos of today's internet era, are like romantic comedies to me: I'm connected for most of a dude's part but we all know how this is going to end. The ender's a make. His boys pop bottles on his ride away. There's hugs all around. Maybe the sexy homie Sylvester gives him a kiss (that dude seriously needs to chill). Yes, the trick we saw on last month's cover, the screen shot of the thumbnail that we clicked on, the trick we all knew he was going to land...he landed it.

I've never done my big trick. I've made many a claim, after many a beer, only to find myself pussing out the next day after arriving at said spot, to fulfill said claim. I never got to ride off into the sunset, never got to hug my boys...never got to kiss Sylvester (you're recognizing a pattern here, I'm sure.)

But you know what...neither has Ali Boulala.

Ali Boulala's Sorry part, literally ends with his destruction and failure. Now, a 25 stair ollie is a very tall order, but how amazing and refreshing is it to see a man not succeed as a way to close out his career's greatest achievement? You see, that's a skate video I can relate to. It doesn't make his part any worse, it makes it real. Us commoners don't normally get our big trick, most of us don't even try. For those that do, sometimes the slam is the clip. I can't relate to a guy rolling away from a 25 stair front feeble, but I can relate to a dude rolling around on the ground in agony probably wondering why he even still skates. Ryan Sheckler experienced a similar moment at the famed, El Toro, yet Plan B thought they would do him a solid and put that clip in the ending credits. Well how dare you, Plan B. In the spirit of Ali Boulala, make that his damn ender. Bail or make it's still gnarly. It's just that the make is what separates professionals from amateurs (but not like paid am's, I'm thinking more like dude's who write this blog and our friends. Guys who aren't good at skating.)

Ali Boulala's Sorry part is the realest account of skateboarding ever produced by a professional skateboarder. He gets drunk, he pukes, his dog humps his leg, he throws meat at a window, he does absolutely absurd things on a skateboard, and best of all? He bails. He gets hurt. He gets really hurt. And he doesn't win...he's just like us. He is our champion.

The people's champion.


[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7B1dDcugg3E&w=420&h=315]







What Ever Happened To: The 'Slams' Section.


Slams are hilarious. Slams are cringe-worthy. Slams can often never be un-seen't. Remember that Hubba Hideout leg breaker tossed in at the end of Austin Stephens' original sponsor video? The crunch, followed by screams only a human being in a state of absolute horror could produce. I'm still not over it. Maybe that sharp eye for gore and appreciation of pain is why Ed brought Austin (the original handsome skateboarder) on the team in the first place. At the time companies like Toy Machine and Zero celebrated the Slam, dedicating entire sections in their videos to these unflattering symbols of failure. But why was this trend in skate video post-production so short lived?

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7-5HlxbjVhA&w=420&h=315]

The way I see it, a good slam represents all that is pure in skateboarding. A humbling, painful, and raw reminder that no one is perfect. Some slams are harder than others. Sometimes you break a bone and it ruins your sense of confidence for the rest of your life. Sometimes you slam so hard it gives you a weird adrenaline rush that motivates you to try again. Sometimes a slam can be so powerful that it knocks your shoes off your feet.

Whatever the case, a slam is something special, and in a world where nothing is sacred anymore I suppose it makes total sense that this beloved video segment faded into obscurity. They sort of go hand in hand with the concept of full-length skate videos in general, which are also teetering at the brink of obsoletion.

Remember, slam sections are compilations. A bunch of bails from everyone, condensed into one montage, in one place. Seeing something like that as a kid was powerful and left a mark, inspiring considerations such as "Maybe it's socially acceptable to wear a cup while skating a handrail?" or "Is being pro actually worth it?" The answer to either of those questions remains to be seen.


And isn't it an odd coincidence that the presence of bail montages were sort of aligned with the roll-out of hi-jinx videos like Jackass and CKY?  In an era where Xtreme sports were experiencing a huge resurgence in popularity, recklessness and debauchery was in. I feel like while there was definitely just a general need to show people that dudes were getting broke the fuck off and working their asses off to put out a video part, it was also a means of keeping up with the times. Basically if your video didn't have a bails section you were blowing it, and none of the Bam-Margera-obsessed youth were ever going to buy your crappy VHS.

These things were everywhere. From some of Toy Machine/Zero's earliest releases, to 411's infamous 411-911, to Tony Hawk's Pro Skater... Yup, THPS. Skate video games were even getting in on that shit. The list goes on. But now what remains? Not to knock on it, but sometimes a Hall of Meat just isn't enough...unless it's Alex's Filho's comprehensive slam-ography. One slam, sandwiched between two 15-second advertisements just doesn't do it for me these days.


Think about it. How rad would some of skateboarding's more recent full-lengths be if they too held onto the bails section? Pretty Sweet, complete with a Super-Slowmo-HD Slam-Tage, edited to any song off of Reflektor? Cold War, resurrecting the group slam highlight reel, edited to literally any punk rock song Jamie Thomas chooses? And lets be honest, nowadays there are a lot of douchebags out there getting paid to ride their skateboards. Wouldn't it be awesome to watch them all eat shit, together in one compilation? Rojo said it best:

"And there's so many kooks in the industry now. I'd much rather watch them get hurt than land tricks straight into mountains of pussy and money."

We deserve better, so this is a call to action: Bring it back. Someone, anyone - I want to see a full bails section, edited to some shitty Dropkick Murphy's song, smack dab in the middle of your next full-length video. You're so capable of it. I'll buy you Shake Shack. Or Bon Chon. Whichever one you're feeling. Options man. Shouldn't that do it for you? If not, watch this and then we'll talk:

 [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fxbZ8ItGbUw&w=420&h=315]



Matt Schlager Vs. 13 Flat 13: A Comprehensive Review of the Riskiest, Most Under-Qualified Amateur Skateboard Stunt Ever Attempted.


This dude is the best. On a day most refer to as "Throwback Thursday" (ayy #tbt), who better to feature than the most god damn legendary try-hard of the century, Matt Schlager. I bet you almost forgot this dude tried to ollie a 13-flat-13, IN THE RAIN, during high school lunch break. What were you doing in high school? Drinking your first 40 oz? Smoking weed in your parents' mini van you just learned how to drive? First handjob? Well Matt was probably doing all of those things too, in addition to HUCKING HIS SLIGHTLY OVERWEIGHT BODY DOWN A FUCKING 13-FLAT-13.

What was the motive there? Did he have an end game with this life threatening stunt? Who was he trying to impress? Or was it a completely selfless act aimed at providing his homies the ultimate pleasure of witnessing a near-death experience? So many questions. Why, Matt Schlager? WHY?

Whatever, lets do a play-by-play of this crazy insane thing that happened 7 years ago.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xe3go8jT9tI&w=420&h=315]


To start, sick fucking titles dude. Not kidding. Look at that shit. Red. Wow. Whatever effect he used, he knew what he was doing. "Matt Schlager VS. 13 flat 13". Epic. Here we go, oh what's that? The muffled sound of someone saying "suspended". Anything could happen, your boy Matt could literally die trying this thing, but nothing could ever match the ultimate consequence of high school suspension. Getter done, Matty-Boy, and get it done quickly, because apparently its cold as shit out there too.

I've watched this video countless times and there's something about the fastening of the bandana that goes down about 20 seconds in that, to me, pretty much defines Matt Schlager as a human being. How fucking rad is that? Pressed for time in the midst of your lunch period, about to take the biggest risk of your adolescent life, yet you absolutely need that bandana tied around your head while you try this shit. He looks ready now...walking away...nope, YOU KNOW HE HAD TO TURN AROUND FOR ONE LAST LOOK, THEN GIVE THAT 13 FLAT 13 A CONFIDENT HEAD NOD. That's a real rockstar move, Matt. I like your style, kid.

Alright enough of that. Lets get to the good shit. The main event. The "Kickstart My Heart" of this epic, sold out, superstar showdown. Matt Schlager Vs. 13 Flat 13, just like the title said. This is what you've paid for, and oh my god you're about to get your money's worth.

"I'm fucking shaking, Matt", says bitch-boy of the year. You know, the dude NOT about to try and ollie something larger than the leap of faith while not being Jamie Thomas. Oh shit everyone shut up, he's really riding up this time.

This is when something more miraculous than the conception and birth of Jesus Christ combined happens. He fucking goes for it, doesn't even ollie, clears only to the top of the second 13, and performs a human firecracker smoothly down the entire remainder of the set. I wanna give the slippery surface provided by the rain all of the credit here, but no. Matt cheated death. He slammed harder than anyone I've ever seen slam. But holy shit, no broken bones, no nothing. Him and Serge Murphy's DNA should be extracted and combined to produce the formula for immortality. Then the shot heard 'round the world goes off. "That was so tight!".


Are you kidding me, Matt? Oh my god. I can't even believe anything anymore forever. You're the sickest dude who has ever skated. I just blacked out I think. You thought that was tight?! God you're a sick son of a bitch and I love you for that. That was the worst case scenario for this stunt (besides dying or being suspended of course, in that order), you lived... and you thought it was "tight"? God bless your evil soul, Matty Schlags.

"Ben's hella gonna suck your dick" is my favorite quote of the aftermath celebration that breaks out after Matt proves he's still alive for us. Who is Ben? Is that Matt's boyfriend? Or was this whole thing a dare? Did Ben boldly, defiantly, and smugly declare that he'd suck Matt Schlager's schlong if he even hucked himself down the 13 flat 13 one single time?

Well Ben, if that's the case then pucker up, because you're about to suck the shit out of Matt Schlager's dick. What a god damn legend.


What Ever Happened To?


Alright, so here I (Evan) am sitting at my desk trying to think of something remotely cool or original to add to Small Talk cuz hey, as it stands, I haven't done JACK. SHIT. for this beautiful(?) thing yet (and I apologize for that Rojo/D. Lew) when I believe that I've struck gold. I've figured it out. This is my contribution. I'm the fucking best to ever do anything ever. The segment will be called "What Ever Happened To?", and will feature primarily some burnouts or dudes who were so close but just not close enough to make it in the struggle. I say primarily burnouts or dudes because the list ain't gonna be limited simply to human beings. I'm going after everything. Trends, products, colors, musical taste, whatever. God damn, I'll even tackle filming techniques. And I know nothing about the technicalities of filming (seriously, literally least qualified dude to talk shit about this shit ever...fire or call the cops on me as soon as possible Rojo).

ANYWAYS, I thought I struck gold and this was it. An idea of my own. HODE UP though, TURNS OUT YA BOI ALREADY DID THIS SHIT. That's right, in high school I wrote for a skate blog (keeganspots.blogspot.com RIP) and did the exact same thing. I wrote one on Matt Allen. I was genuinely concerned about the dude's whereabouts/what happened to him...and ya know what, I still am, quite frankly.

So basically fuck it, I'm going to pick up where my high school, virgin self left off and dig deeper this time. Who's gonna call me out on it? Everyone copies everyone's ideas ever (right? triangles, marijuana Leafs, for example), and I just happen to be copying myself, so get over it.

I won't/will disappoint you all.



Come one, come all...

I welcome you all to smltalk.com, the "water-cooler" for sidewalk surfing enthusiasts. We're not here just to repost the weekly links of skateboarding's big media (but we will) and we're not here to bore you with our silly, sub-par iphone edits (but we most certainly will). We aim to offer you content representative of our great city of Boston, while also keeping up on our skate brethren all across the East Coast. I shall keep this introduction to our blog brief, as there are many posts to follow this one here. I hope you all enjoy.  


P.S. - Shout out to Bravo's Pizza in Allston, they have a new buffalo slice and it is DIVINE :)